Bio-based product development is gaining in popularity as MAI-listed Applied DB, a local polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and adhesive maker, joins the trend by diversifying into bio-based product manufacturing.
The company is producing and marketing plastic bags used to carry goods at shopping malls and plastic bags that serve as a plant nursery, said Pornpiwan Niramoncherdchai, managing director of Applied DB.
Roughly 20-30% of raw materials used to make the plastic bags come from cassava.
Earnings from the new product sales are not shown in the company's total revenue because it has just begun the bio-based product business, said Ms Pornpiwan.
The new business is operated by Applied DB's wholly-owned subsidiary ADB Bio Co.
Ms Pornpiwan expects the company's development of bio-based plastics to pave the way for it to run a campaign for carbon neutrality, a balance between carbon dioxide emissions and absorption, in the long term.
Her company is waiting to see whether the new government will phase out single-use plastic bags, which cause waste disposal problems, and replace them with biodegradable plastics.
Without a clear state policy on plastic bags, the future of the company's bio-based products remains uncertain.
In the PVC, sealant and adhesive business, ADB Sealant, another subsidiary of Applied DB, is revising sales targets for 2023 and 2024, following an unimpressive business performance this year.
These products are feedstocks for shoe and wire cable production.
In February, the company said it expected to rack up more than 2 billion baht in revenue this year as demand in infrastructure construction was believed to be returning to normal.
However, in the third quarter its revenue decreased by 31% to 368 million baht, down from 539 million baht in the corresponding period last year. During the first nine months, revenue fell by 26% to 1.21 billion baht, down from 1.64 billion baht in the same period last year.
The decrease stemmed from weak demand for wire cable amid the global economic slowdown and low chemical prices.